The Living Wage Map

An ongoing public debate about the struggle of low-income families to stay afloat raises a key question: how great is the gap between the minimum wage and the amount of money needed to meet a minimum standard of living?

The Living Wage Calculator, developed by Professor Amy Glasmeier of MIT, examines this question. Esri has map-enabled the Calculator data, revealing regional patterns. Tap below to explore the map.

MIT’s Living Wage Calculator estimates the cost of living (“living wage”) in each of the nation's counties and major metropolitan areas, and compares it to the minimum wage for a variety of household types. Mapped here are three types: parent with spouse and two children, single parent with one child, and single adult.

Variations in the gap between living wage and minimum wage occur for a variety of reasons. A city with a relatively high minimum wage, for instance, may still show a large gap due to a high cost of living. Conversely, living expenses tend to be lower in rural areas, making even a relatively low minimum wage come closer to meeting basic household needs.

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The
Living
Wage

Map

An ongoing public debate about the struggle of low-income families to stay afloat raises a key question: how great is the gap between the minimum wage and the amount of money needed to meet a minimum standard of living?


The Living Wage Calculator, developed by Professor Amy Glasmeier of MIT, examines this question. Esri has map-enabled the Calculator data, revealing regional patterns. Tap below to explore the map.

Loading

Loading Map

Explore
Map

The Living Wage Map

Parent with Spouse and Two Children
Parent with Spouse and Two Children
Parent with Spouse and Two Children

Living
Wage
Minimum
Wage
The
Gap
Single Parent with One Child
Single Parent with One Child
Single Parent with One Child

Living
Wage
Minimum
Wage
The
Gap
Single Adult
Single Adult
Single Adult

Living
Wage
Minimum
Wage
The
Gap

MIT’s Living Wage Calculator estimates the cost of living (“living wage”) in each of the nation's counties and major metropolitan areas, and compares it to the minimum wage for a variety of household types. Mapped here are three types: parent with spouse and two children, single parent with one child, and single adult.

Variations in the gap between living wage and minimum wage occur for a variety of reasons. A city with a relatively high minimum wage, for instance, may still show a large gap due to a high cost of living. Conversely, living expenses tend to be lower in rural areas, making even a relatively low minimum wage come closer to meeting basic household needs.

The Living Wage Map

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Parent with Spouse and Two Children
Single Parent with One Child
Single Adult
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Counties
Cities
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Living
Wage
Minimum
Wage
The
Gap